Thursday, December 16, 2010

Christmas memories

December is only half over and we've already got some fantastic memories. 

   We've watched Jacey perform a lovely song on the piano,

broke a sweat while putting on gloves,

napped on the couch while fighting off pneumonia,

and decorated the tree. 

Devin decided to commemorate the month with a very special drawing.  I give you.... "Daddy Yelling at the Christmas Tree". 

The back story - the bottom of the tree was cut at an angle so it would not sit straight in the stand no matter how tightly Todd turned the screws. 

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Inexpensive holiday sparkle

Tis the season for glitter, sparkle, and twinkling lights!  It's also the season for  crafting, though every season is the season for crafting, is it not? I wanted to do something different with the mantle this year so I turned to my favorite places for inspiration - Michael's and Target.  At Target I found these adorable glass bottles that cost $2.99 for four.  I bought two packs. My plan was to fill them with something  and line them up on the mantle, so off to Michael's I went.  In the floral department I found the sole red, glittery branch neslted among the silver and gold branches. I needed something to anchor the branches in the  bottles so I walked to the aisle where the glass beads are kept. I was beginning to become dismayed because everything I found was too big to fit in the openings of the bottles.  Then I saw it - metallic sand!  Silver metallic sand! I never knew such a product existed.  I think I audibly gasped. 
 I sped drove home and called my favorite five year old to help me.  She poured the metallic sand (!) into the bottles while I snipped the branches with the wire cutters I use for beading.  I only used a fraction of the sand so there's plenty left for other sparkly crafts.  There are many more bits of red branches, too.  Some of them adorn the Barbie houses in the playroom. 

I saw these cones these cones in a catalog and thought they were really pretty.  They weren't terribly expensive ($15 for a set of 3), but I thought making them would be  fun.  I bought 2 paper mache cones at Michael's ♥ along with metallic paint and way too much glitter than necessary.  My total was around $15.00.  I already had Modge Podge and acrylic spray sealant at home.  Again, I called my littlest girl to help.  We began by painting the cones. When the paint was dry we covered the cone in  a thin layer of Modge Podge.  Then it was time for the fun part.  I poured the glitter on a cookie sheet, slid the cone on Devin's arm, and let her go.  She really liked this part.  She rolled and rolled. The glitter covered so well that I don't think we even needed the paint.  There was  enough glitter left over to make about 30 more cones so back in the jars it went.  Once they had dried over night, I sprayed the cones with the acrylic to keep the glitter from flaking off.  I adore glitter, but not when it's on my hands, rugs, or childrens' scalps. 
Here's the finished product, with a few additions..lights, votives, and a vase filled with ornaments - one of my favorite tricks.  I made the wreath last year.  You can buy one here  if you want to spend $59.00 plus shipping.  Are they serious?  It's a piece of styrofoam. With a feather boa wrapped around it.  Make one for yourself.  Don't be afraid of the glue gun.
If you've got sparkle in your house, let's see it!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

wax on...wax off

During the summer Bryn and Tori discovered they could wax Devin's eyebrows with stickers.  Devin was a very willing subject and thought it was hilarious.  A few weeks ago, while the rain prevented them from playing outside, Bryn and Tori  waxed Devin again.  This time they used packing tape and waxed her nose.  All 3 of them were giggling their little heads off.  After ripping the tape off Devin's nose Bryn used a foam paint brush to smooth Devin's skin. 

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The view from my house

This is what I saw while standing on my back deck a few weeks ago.

This is what I saw while standing on my front porch a few days ago.

This is what I saw while standing in my driveway today.
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Friday, October 8, 2010


If you had asked me 2 months ago what my favorite New England season was, I would have said summer.  Hot sunny days, the beach, tomatoes fresh from the garden, flip flops and hot pink toes.  Right now, however, my favorite New England season is fall. Today's weather was everything you read about in Yankee Magazine - brilliant blue skies, crisp, dry air, and the perfect temperature.  Warm enough to leave the jackets in the car, but cool enough so the girls could run, climb, and jump for hours without breaking a sweat.

After playing for a long time, we ate ice cream because that's just what we do.

The tomato vines are barren, but we now have these beauties.
I'm still wearing flip flops, but my toes are no longer pink. 

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


Do you know what I did the day the girls went back to school?  I decorated for Halloween.  The date was September 9.  I tried to wait for the girls to come home from school so they could help me, but as I unpacked the boxes the mantle called out to me.  I was weak. I gave in.

 Glittery skulls were carefully placed randomly dumped into a vase.

 Glass beads filled another vase.

 I bought some really cheap brown paper mache skulls from Michael's,  painted them white, then coated them in glitter.  On the bottom of the basket is a strand of  purple and orange lights.  On top of that is the same creepy, black wiry stuff that hides the wire on the mantle. 
 Here's the basket at night...

Happy haunting!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Who took my little girl?

"Having a daughter is like planting seeds from an unmarked packet.  You vaguely believe that you are going to get daisies.  Instead, you get orchids, morning glories, sunflowers, roses...But all beautiful. Like you" ~Pam Brown

The weirdest thing happened.  Just yesterday I gave birth to a beautiful 7 pound little girl and today she boarded the bus and went to middle school.  She set out her clothes last night , modeled 3 pairs of shoes and asked which went better with her outfit.  This morning she applied lip gloss (clear..I'm not ready for color) and misted herself with cherry blossom body spray.  She slipped her carefully labeled binders into her backpack, along with other girlie necessities like a mirror and a butterfly adorned day planner.  She is 5' 2" and 72 pounds thanks to the genes she inherited from her Auntie Vicki who inherited them from her Auntie Ange.  The stuffed animals that used to pack her bed at night  now sit in a basket, unloved. The pony bead & pipe cleaner bracelets have been replaced by hoops and studs from Claire's. The Disney Princess glitter makeup has been discarded. She no longer smells like Johnson's baby soap.  She has her own products with names like warm vanilla sugar and coconut/lime.  Her chubby little fingers that once grasped chunky paint brushes have grown into  long, lean fingers that play the piano beautifully.  Elmo and Dora were dumped long ago along with their respective theme songs.  Words and phrases like "whatever", "BFF", "LOL", and "sweet" are part of her every day vernacular.  She no longer asks for Barbies or Polly Pockets.  She wants a cell phone.  "Will you color with me?" has become, "will you paint my nails?"  She calls me "Mom" instead of "Mommy".  She is growing up but she's still, and will always be, my baby. 

She is a tween and like all tweens, she has mastered such skills as the eye roll and the exasperated sigh. She annoys her sister and they really annoy her. There were days this summer when I couldn't wait for the school year to start. I'd like to take that back.
Her bus came at 6:45 which is the time Todd leaves for work, so he accompanied her to the bus stop.  I probably would have embarrassed her.  I held back my tears until they walked out the door but Todd glanced back, knowing what he would see. 

This picture is one of favorites.  Jacey said she put makeup on her face to look pretty.  Bryn wanted some so Jacey happily obliged.  The 'makeup' is marker. 

Thursday, August 26, 2010

More shaving foam fun

We did this earlier in the summer and I think I posted pictures.    The girls really love playing with this stuff and it's a cheap way to spend an afternoon.  Watching the antics of care-free children on a sunny summer day is good for the soul.  Don't you agree? 
See Jacey in the backround?  I think she really wanted to smear shaving foam on her sisters but thought she would be seen as 'uncool' since she's starting middle school soon. 

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The games they play

Summer is half over (yippee) and the girls are still coming up with new ways to pass the time.  Today Jacey and Devin played "Three Blind Mice".  Devin closed her eyes and stumbled around the house, using  a foam sword as a walking stick.  Staying true to the nursery rhyme, Jacey chased her with a (minuscule, plastic) carving  knife. 

What other games do they play?  I'm so happy you asked...
While relaxing on a dock in NH last weekend, I heard the unmistakable sound of guilty giggling.  Just as a mom knows the difference between her newborn's hungry cries versus wet diaper cries, she also has the uncanny ability to discern between playful giggles and 'Mom is going to kill us, but this is too fun to stop doing' giggles.  I reluctantly tore myself away from my juicy novel and went to investigate the source of the laughter.  There they were, my 4 darling little girls actually playing together.  Jacey, Bryn, and Tori were waxing Devin's eyebrows--with Devin's full permission and approval.  Devin was  handing out stickers to her sisters and they pressed them against her eyebrows. Then they ripped them off.  "We got 3 hairs" Devin gleefully exclaimed when I completely freaked out and asked them what the hell they were doing gently questioned them.

Friday, July 23, 2010


We were recently invited to spend the day with some friends at their parents' lake house.  In addition to swimming for hours, the girls went tubing.  They loved it!


Devin was eager to try it, but was happy to just sit and float.  That wasn't much fun for the rest of us, so I asked her if she would go fast if I came in with her. She agreed.
I pulled her goggles down for her because she didn't like the water splashing her face.

This is my favorite picture.  I just adore the look on her little face. 
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